Dutch Easr Indies campaign

Discussions on WW2 in the Pacific and the Sino-Japanese War.
daveh
Member
Posts: 1439
Joined: 11 Feb 2003 18:14
Location: uk

Dutch Easr Indies campaign

Post by daveh » 26 Apr 2003 15:56

I have been reading the account of the campaign in the Dutch East Indies on the site below.

http://www.geocities.com/dutcheastindies/

It is a very detailed and informative account and as the resources of the Dutch East Indies were one of the principal war aims of the Japanese one that should be more widely known.

Does anyone know of any Allied plans to recover the Dutch East Indies?
I know none were undertaken but were any considered? Given the importance of the oil supplies from the Dutch East Indies I would expect some consideration to have been given to such a move.

How long did it take for the Japanese to restart oil production?

User avatar
megjur
Member
Posts: 317
Joined: 15 Nov 2002 00:27
Location: texas

Post by megjur » 27 Apr 2003 05:41

The Australians invaded one of the isalnds in the summer of '45. It was the last allied campaign (except for the Russian attack) of the war. I'll look up info on the invasion and post it. The area was too easily given up in 1942, read accounts of the Battle of Palembang and you'll see that the British could have turned the tide but were withdrawn. Their Hurricanes were tearing up the Japanese forces trying to advance up river, and an Australian tank battalion was enroute to reinforce Palembang and its airfiedl. The only Japanese units in place were a group of paratroopers, but faulty allied command decisions led to withdrawl and chaos.

daveh
Member
Posts: 1439
Joined: 11 Feb 2003 18:14
Location: uk

Post by daveh » 27 Apr 2003 11:26

Thanks megjur, I d be very interested in the 1945 campaign as I know little of the campaigns in the Far East outside the Malaya/Burma and the Phippinnes, Iwo Jima and Okinawa campaigns.

Do you know the details of the Australian tank unit you mentioned?
Thanks in advance

sand digger
Member
Posts: 33
Joined: 11 Mar 2003 04:42
Location: Australia

Post by sand digger » 28 Apr 2003 03:20

Recovery of the Dutch East Indies was not a prioity because it was isolated by Allied advances directed towards Japan. Consequently most Japanese shipping attempting the DEI - Japan run was sunk in the attempts and the DEI became a liability for Japan. The Australian late in the war invasion was militarily not necessary but, because MacArthur excluded Australian land forces from participating in the towards Japan thrust, it was conceived as giving them something to do.

The overall reason why the DEI was not initially a defensive proposition was because land forces there could not be supported by the thin Allied naval assets then available which were being concentrated elsewhere. Land battles in the Pacific were only viable where the waters around a particular island could be controlled, particularly for supply purposes. While air supply was developed it was sufficient only for small operations and of course required air security and bases within range.

User avatar
megjur
Member
Posts: 317
Joined: 15 Nov 2002 00:27
Location: texas

Post by megjur » 28 Apr 2003 04:26

The Australian 9th division landed at Brunie Bay in northwest Borneo and on Labuan and Muara islands on 6/10/45. On 6/20 they landed on the coast of Sarawak. On 7/1/45 the Australians landed at Balikpapan and advanced into the interior of Borneo. They were accompanied by New Zealand troops. The invasion seems something of an after thought, but in MacArthurs defense, at the time of the invasion most figured the war would drag on with the intended invasion of Japan, so the Dutch East Indies seemed to need to have been dealt with. With the war ending shortly after the A-bomb, it makes the Australian losses suffered seem in vain.

Return to “WW2 in the Pacific & Asia”